Hey everyone! Welcome to this week’s Legend of Korra review. This week’s episode, Peacemakers, saw some interesting developments for our characters and left us with yet another huge cliffhanger. Perhaps the biggest one yet! If you haven’t seen this weeks episode be sure to swing by Nick.com or just purchase the whole series over on iTunes! And if you missed last week’s review, check it out here! SPOILERS for this week’s episode ahead…
Well, things started off interestingly enough this week, with Korra and the Gaang returning to Republic City and meeting up with Lin again! Hurray Lin! Sadly though, things aren’t going to be going well for our Avatar this episode.
It was nice to see Korra openly acknowledge the fact that she isn’t neutral in this civil war. Personally, I’m with her on this one. The Avatar isn’t supposed to be a neutral force in the world (despite what people keep telling Korra), the Avatar is supposed to be neutral between the human and spirit world. Sometimes keeping balance between two worlds is going to mean picking a side, and I’m glad Korra has picked one. That being said… she needs to take two steps back and think about things before she goes barreling into stuff.
I’ve seen some people criticize Book 2 for “tossing out all of Korra’s character growth from Book 1”; but I disagree. In Book 1 Korra was brought to her lowest point and forced to face her greatest fears, that is what helped push her to turn to her spiritual side. Sure she learned a thing or two about patience, but she hardly reached anywhere near Aang’s level. Keep in mind, her master plan at the end of Book 1 was to face Amon 1v1, and she was just lucky Mako decided to join her. Korra is NOT a master planner here, she’s still a headstrong girl who things she can do whatever she wants. She’s just learned that she isn’t invincible. I’m a firm believer that the absence of Tenzin in her life right now is a key factor in why she’s so outrageously aggressive this Book. Hopefully this Book will help change all that…
It’s also interesting to note, as I’ve seen a few people point out, that pretty much every idea Varrick has given our characters this season has been ridiculously illegal. Like, TERRIBLY so. Let’s recap…
- Bribing Judges to get a verdict they need.
- He encourages Korra to convince a National Military to go rogue.
- He plans to use propaganda to twist a populace to join their cause.
- He plans to sell weapons to a besieged nation VIA Sato Industries.
- He has openly admitted to contributing to political campaigns in order to have them in his pocket.
Yet despite all this not a single member of Team Avatar have called him on it. In fact, they all seem to agree with him at every turn! If I were to describe to you Korra and her friends using only their interactions with Varrick, you’d probably think they were the antagonist this season. These are the kind of shady political dealings we’d expect from Azula, not the Avatar. Yet here we are. It’ll be interesting to see how/if this develops going forward this season.
I’ve also got to give mad props to Mako this episode. Seriously folks, this is why his character is awesome. He’s the boyfriend Korra needs, but not the one she deserves right now. While Korra’s running around and flipping tables (literally) because her family is in danger and she really has no idea what course of action to take, Mako is standing firm in his belief to stay calm and do things by the book. He knows something is up and things aren’t as they seem, so what’s he doing? He’s getting to the bottom of it; everyone else be damned.
It’s also interesting to see him as a potential source of reason for Korra. With Tenzin absent it would seem it’s up to Mako to help keep Korra from sticking her boot in her mouth. Yet despite how much he tries, Korra just isn’t willing to listen. She seems trapped in the mindset that if you’re her friend/boyfriend, than you have to agree and support her 100%. This is obviously a very immature view of how relationships work, but seeing as how Korra has lead a sheltered and secluded life, this isn’t surprising. Korra has a lot to learn about how the world works.
I’ll be keeping a close eye on Mako this season, as I suspect his investigation is going to reveal some important stuff…
It was good to see General Iroh again, although his love/respect for the Avatar seems to be a bit much. As it stands, he’s starting to just be that guy that does whatever the Avatar says because she’s the Avatar (which isn’t helping things) as he waxes sentimental about how much his family is awesome. If they don’t work to flesh out all this talk of his mother and grandfather, than all this talk is going to seem awfully fanservice-y.
Thankfully this episode had some lighter moments though, with both Bolin’s adventures w/ Varrick and Meelo’s training sessions with Pokey. With last week’s episode featuring Ikki and this week’s focusing on Meelo, I suspect next week we’ll finally dive into what’s going on with Jinora and that statue she saw (with her eventually becoming a much more important character). I’m glad we got to spend some time with Meelo and Ikki, but as Jinora is the oldest, I’m more interested in her story and she’s going to face. Sorry Melo and Pokey, you guys are cute, but you’re not quite old enough to tackle some of the bigger issues this show has hinted at.
I’ve also got to say how surprised I am that Eska is taking this all so emotionally. There is clearly more going on inside of her than she lets on, and I really hope she turns out to be more than just an angry ex-girlfriend character hell-bent on getting revenge. This series hasn’t disappointed me when it comes to characters like this before, and I hope that trend continues.
That cliffhanger though! I’m with most people in that I hope Korra getting eaten by the spirit-kraken will mark the start of her spiritual journey this season. Korra is becoming quickly overwhelmed in the physical world and I can’t help but feel a new and focused objective, on her own, is exactly what she needs to gain some perspective. Korra needs to see that the lives of her friends and family don’t revolve around her, nor does the world at large. She has a job to do, but so do her friends. Hopefully a foray into the spirit world will do just that.